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Fast Food News

Chipotle Is Testing Spicy Milkshakes And Avocado Tostadas

Photo Courtesy of Anna-Marie Walsh/@beautyandthebeets

Chipotle had the reputation of being a healthy alternative fast casual restaurant that was very selective with its menu items, but as it tries to climb out of the hole dug by a plague of e. Coli outbreaks, it looks like they’re throwing stuff at the wall to see what sticks.

The Mexican grill’s latest rollout of test menu items are far removed from its “healthy” reputation, as they include quesadillas, nachos, tostadas, and even a Mexican chocolate milkshake.

Yes, you might soon be able to get a milkshake at Chipotle.

These items are being tested at their Next Kitchen in New York, where they’ve tested items before such as quinoa and frozen palomas.

While none of their new menu items are particularly exclusive to any restaurant, it does feel like Chipotle is taking a page out of Taco Bell’s innovation book. After all, they are a major competitor in the Mexican-inspired fast food world.

Over the last decade, Taco Bell has had a barrage of innovative menu items, and it has been difficult for fast food competitors to keep up. Between burritos that feature Fritos and at one point even Pop Rocks, and nacho fries, Taco Bell has proven that going balls to the wall not only helps generate hype, but it actually shows in sales.

If you don’t believe that these limited time menu items are beneficial to a restaurant such as Taco Bell, their most recent Nacho Fries rollout was the most successful launch in their history, selling more than 53 million orders in less than 2 month span.

Even Del Taco has shown a willingness to mix things up with huevos ranchero burritos, queso blanco, and even fire roasted shrimp.

Sofritas quesadilla & avocado tostada from the Chipotle test kitchen.

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Conversely, Chipotle has had slow and prodding innovation, with past attempts at chorizo and queso not exactly connecting with consumers. Their chorizo option is no more, and they had to adjust their queso recipe after facing backlash for its chalky taste.

With Chipotle trying to jump back in the saddle, this is the first time in recent memory they’ve announced five new items at once. You have to think at least one of them will connect. Possibly the milkshake?

It does looks like the shake has potential. New Yorker Anna-Marie Walsh tried it out at the test kitchen, describing it as having a bit of a spicy taste, adding that it was “absolutely delicious.”

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Believe it or not, you were able to order a quesadilla before, but it wasn’t on Chipotle’s official menu, and as we learned with the secret menu Quesarito, it was a bitch to for them to fire up a quesadilla with the way their kitchen was set up.

Time will tell if these items will be deemed worthy of a nationwide rollout. It certainly seems like milkshakes, quesadillas, and avocado tostadas would be a welcoming addition to their everyday menu. Until then, Chipotle fans will just have to go with their usual order.

Categories
Deals Fast Food

For A Single Kiss, Qdoba Will Give You A Free Entree on Valentine’s Day

Photo: Facebook

Valentine’s Day is less than a week away and we’re definitely feeling the love.

Qdoba, in a partnership with No Hungry Kid, is offering a pretty attractive deal to anyone who decides to stop by the fast-casual restaurant on the most romantic day of the year.

Guests who visit any participating location of Qdoba Mexican Grill on Valentine’s Day can get themselves a free entree for the price of a kiss.

Any customer who buys a Qdoba entree at regular price simply has to kiss someone, or something, at check out and they can get a free meal.

This means if you bring your significant other, give them a quick peck on the cheek for a free meal. If you don’t have anyone to spend the day with, bring a tiny action figure you can do the same with and get that second plate for lunch the next day.

If you feel like sharing your love, Qdoba is donating $1 (up to $10,000) to No Kid Hungry for every photo posted on social media with the hashtag #QdobaForAKiss in order to battle childhood hunger.

Categories
Fast Food News

Chipotle Faces $2 Billion Lawsuit For Allegedly Using Photo Of Woman Without Permission

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This is probably not the best way for Chipotle start off the year, but the burrito bowl maven is in the middle of another lawsuit. This time, a woman is suing the fast-casual chain for more than $2 billion for using an image of her in a promotional photo she says Chipotle had no permission to use.

According to Grubstreet, Leach Caldwell of California is seeking a least $2,237,633,000 from the company for a photo taken by a food photographer Steve Adams in 2006. Caldwell alleges that Adams took a photo of her eating at a Denver Chipotle.

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Caldwell refused to sign a form to use that image after her encounter with him, but discovered eight years later that the image of her was used as promotion at a Florida Chipotle store in 2014. Additionally, alcohol was digitally added to Caldwell’s photo in front of her.

Chipotle founder and CEO Steve Ells and Adams are named as defendants of the suit. The specific amount in her suit is a reflection of the company’s profits from 2006-2015.

Categories
Fast Food

Chipotle May Step Into The Burger Business

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Looks like Chipotle wants to focus on burgers now. According to Bloomberg, the company filed a trademark application for the slogan “Better burgers.” For a brand that solely focus on fast-casual Mexican food, that’s definitely something different.

Chipotle spokesman Chris Arnold told Bloomberg that the filing was a potential idea that the company is exploring.

While it probably won’t have anything to do with Chipotle’s current set of ingredients, imagine stacking a burger with some carnitas and carne asada drenched in hot sauce.

That’d probably sell.

We wonder, though, if putting energy into burgers is the best idea of Chipotle right now. The food safety situation has been kind of a mess these last few months.

Categories
Deals

Chipotle Will Give You Free Guac And Chips For Playing This Simple Game

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Who: Chipotle Mexican Grill

What: Customers will get free chips and guacamole if they can spot five differences in the three photos shown by playing the game Guac Hunter.

Under a timer, you’ll have to click on the differences between the two photos and see if you can beat the clock. The prize, free guac and tortilla chips.

The sucky thing is the images rotate so you can’t just quit and try again with the same two images. Still, if you can stick it through, you’ll get yourself a free snack.

Where: All participating Chipotle locations.

Categories
Humor

How This Guy Almost Got Arrested For Using The Chipotle App

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Everyone’s got a hilarious fuck up story. Y’know, the one where one innocent mistake escalates into something terrible.

This guy steefkeef from Reddit, has a pretty hilarious one concerning Chipotle’s ordering app. He recently posted in the popular subreddit TIFU (Today, I Fucked Up) recalling an experience at his local Chipotle Mexican Grill.

Behold his unfortunate tale. Like everything else that’s posted on Reddit, take it with a grain of salt.

I was leaving my office when I decided to order Chipotle for the first time using the app. I typed in my credit card information and ordered a burrito bowl. I then got a confirmation email in the name of my girlfriend, but I didn’t think anything of it since I knew she uses the app all the time and has used it on my phone before.

When I get there I ask for the order I placed. The lady looked at me suspiciously and asked me for an ID. I told her that it’s probably under my girlfriend’s name and that I can show her the confirmation email. As I told her this, I get weird stare from a guy in the back on the phone, and a few other employees working the line. The guy came up to me and told me I had to wait there.

Turns out, I placed an order using my girlfriend’s saved credit card which she had lost a few days before. Chipotle called her to tell her that there was no guac available that night, which lead her to think that I, the thief, was using her ‘stolen’ card. She told them that I had stolen her card and to call the cops and detain me. That’s exactly what they were doing until I called her to get things straightened out.

Yup, almost got arrested for ordering a burrito bowl.

(h/t steefkeef)

 

 

Categories
Restaurants

Here’s How Much Money Chipotle CEOs Lost After The Sh*t That Went Down Last Year

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Last year was a pretty rough year for Chipotle. The quick service Mexican Grill saw dozens of customers get sick from either the norovirus or e. coli. With stocks falling, it’s no surprise that the company’s co-CEOs are taking a pay cut.

USA Today reports that both Steve Ells and Monty Moran suffered compensation cuts of 50% in 2015. This drops their earnings to $13.8 million (from $28.9) and $13.6 million (from $28.4), respectively.

It looks like they’ll have to tighten their belts as they figure out how to get revenue up for the QSR chain.

Still, Chipotle seems like a decent place to grab a drink after work. Hopefully things look up for them in the 2016 year.

Photo: Google Maps

Categories
Restaurants

Chipotle Will Shut Down Every Restaurant, For A Few Hours

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Last year, Chipotle had a string of extremely unfortunate cases where customers would get sick from eating at the fast-casual restaurants. Now, the company will be closing down ALL of its restaurants this February to address the recent health concerns and talk about food safety. But just for a few hours.

The Chicago Tribune reports that on Feb. 8, the restaurants will close their doors and meet to discuss a range of issues. This will involve all staff, says a spokesman for Chipotle.

Among the topics are food safety, the restaurant’s new role as well as any questions employees might have.

Since the outbreaks of both E. coli and the norovirus, stock has plunged and the restaurant is currently being investigated. Chipotle has also begun to double its giveaways to make up for the last couple of months.

Still no word on how everyone got E. coli though.

h/t The Chicago Tribune